I’m a middle-aged woman who uses a bike to get around. I prefer to ride on protected infrastructure, like pathways and cycle tracks, but I am confident enough to ride on most roads.
My biggest job these days is being a mom. And, well: This Mom Bikes.
I am a mom who uses a cargo bike to get around. I seek out protected infrastructure, like pathways and cycle tracks, and I am confident enough to ride on some (but not all) roads.
See the difference?
Woman are still in the minority of people who ride bicycles. I want to see that change, and soon. Many women of my background are caregivers that are primarily responsible for the movement of their children and it can be a heavy burden. When we add infrastructure to cities we see an increase in women and families traveling by bike, which has a positive ripple effect like you cannot even imagine, on health, on productivity — you name it.
I want to live in a city that leads the way. I want my city to design infrastructure for people that makes women confident to travel by whatever means is appropriate, on foot or cycling, and — most importantly — I want my children to be able to move freely in their neighbourhood.
I highlight that I am a mother, not just because I want to encourage more women using bicycles to get around town, but more so because I want to emphasize that I am not a whole bunch of images that enshroud the stereotypical people who use bikes to get around: male, hardcore, clad in spandex, or some kind of evangelical hippy. I am “just” a mom. When you see me at preschool drop-off or school pick-up or taking my kids to dance or swimming lessons, I am still that mom who needs a shower, craves eating spicy food again, and really enjoys a glass of wine at night. I am not whoever you think I am, I am just me. I am not “hardcore”. I am not “a diehard environmentalist”. I am not a “pariah”. Sure, I like to ride bikes, but mostly I am just me and I use a cargo bike to move in my city, with my kids.
My educational background informs my perspective: I am an educator with a background in studying how the body works (“Physiology”) and how health intersects with society (“Social Studies of Medicine”). I am not an engineer. I am not a planner. (Admittedly, I am married to one.) Through writing at thismombikes.net I hope to learn more about the processes that inform how I am able to (safely) move through my city.
So, keep your eyes peeled on this site as I write about this journey of active transportation (with kids). I sincerely hope that I can convince you that what I do should not be on the periphery of society, rather it should be the norm for many people, and I hope that you will join me.